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PTIN Application Process

The IRS requires anyone who prepares an individual or business tax return for a fee to get a Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN). Here's a step-by-step guide on how to get your PTIN today.

Don't have a PTIN and need to obtain one?

Most first-time PTIN applicants can obtain a PTIN online in about 15 minutes. The fee is $35.95 paid directly to the IRS and is non-refundable. View this checklist to get started.


PTIN Application Checklist: What you need to get started

Before you begin your PTIN application, be sure you have the following available:

  • Social Security Number

  • Personal information (name, mailing address, date of birth)

  • Business information (name, mailing address, telephone number)

  • Previous year’s individual tax return (name, address, filing status)

  • Explanations for felony convictions (if any)

  • Explanations for problems with your U.S. individual or business tax obligations (if any)

  • Credit/Debit/ATM card for the $35.95 PTIN user fee. The user fee is non-refundable.

  • If applicable, any U.S.-based professional certification information (CPA, attorney, enrolled agent, enrolled retirement plan agent, enrolled actuary, certified acceptance agent, or state license) including certification number, the jurisdiction of issuance, and expiration date

Once you gather all of your information, just follow these easy steps to obtain your PTIN:

  • Create Your Account — First, you must create an account by providing your name, email address, and security question information. The system will then email your temporary password, which you will change when you go back to enter your information in the PTIN application.

  • Apply for Your PTIN — You will complete the online application by providing personal information, information about your previous year’s tax return, professional credentials, and more as shown above.

  • Pay Your Fee – The application will transfer you to our partner bank where you will make your payment of $35.95 by credit/debit/ATM card or eCheck.

  • Get Your PTIN — After completion of the online application, your PTIN is provided online.

Note: All PTIN correspondence is delivered through secure online messaging in your PTIN account. Use the most up-to-date email address when obtaining your PTIN to ensure that you receive our messages.


Renew your PTIN in 3 easy steps:

  1. If you already have an online PTIN account, login here

  2. Complete the online renewal application. You must verify your personal information and answer a few questions. View a checklist of what you need before you get started.

  3. Pay the $35.95 renewal fee via credit/debit/ATM card or eCheck. Upon completion of your application and payment, you’ll receive confirmation that your PTIN has been renewed.


Prefer to apply or renew by paper?

It only takes about 15 minutes to apply for or renew your PTIN online. But if you prefer to use the paper option, Form W-12, IRS Paid Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN) Application PDF, it will take 4-6 weeks to process. For more information on completing Form W-12, view instructions PDF. Send completed Form W-12 and payment of $35.95 to:


IRS Tax Pro PTIN Processing Center PO Box 380638 San Antonio, TX 78268

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